Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Vector competence of Aedes albopictus populations for Chikungunya virus is shaped by their demographic history.

Abstract

The mosquito Aedes albopictus is one of the most dangerous invasive species. Its worldwide spread has created health concerns as it is a major vector of arboviruses of public health significance such as chikungunya (CHIKV). Dynamics of different genetic backgrounds and admixture events may have impacted competence for CHIKV in adventive populations. Using microsatellites, we infer the genetic structure of populations across the expansion areas that we then associate with their competence for different CHIKV genotypes. Here we show that the demographic history of Ae. albopictus populations is a consequence of rapid complex patterns of historical lineage diversification and divergence that influenced their competence for CHIKV. The history of adventive populations is associated with CHIKV genotypes in a genotype-by-genotype interaction that impacts their vector competence. Thus, knowledge of the demographic history and vector competence of invasive mosquitoes is pivotal for assessing the risk of arbovirus outbreaks in newly colonized areas.